Creating a Budget for your Renovation

The before and after transformation of a renovation

Renovations can be expensive or cheap, large or small. We all know budgeting for a renovation is important, but how do you create a budget without knowing what many of the basics are going to cost?

You know the saying, ‘Failing to plan is planning to fail’, so start by completely mapping out your renovation ahead of time. By breaking your project down into sections it’s easier to see where the costs are going to come from and having contingencies in place for unforeseen costs is a must (usually 10% of the total estimate), because no matter how experienced you are, some bumps in the road just cannot be anticipated.



Start by breaking the project down into steps in order of process – There is no point shopping for the tiles if you’re still in the process of saving for the reno!

  • Demolition – Cost of skip bin hire, dump fees, soil removal, excavating, asbestos removal.
  • Materials – Cost of gyprock, tiles, timber, paint, fixtures, fittings, flooring.
  • Preparation – Cost of waterproofing, insulation, sanding, painting, underpinning (foundation repairs).
  • Professional services – Cost of builder, electrician, plumber, tiler, carpenter, labourers.

Once you have a basic idea of your plan, it’s time to consult your builder to discuss every detail. By going through your project line by line and clarifying every detail before construction starts, it minimises the number and cost of variations during the build process and you’ll have a better idea of how much to budget for each step.

This is where hiring an all-encompassing team like allenCO construction can be a huge benefit, because it takes the hassle out of collating multiple quotes from multiple tradespeople to get your job done, saving you time and money.



While creating a budget and sticking to it is super important, so is allowing plenty of time to get the job done.

Rushing through your renovation to meet a certain milestone will almost certainly end up with mistakes, mishaps, and budget blowouts.

The desired end result of your renovation project can often take longer than anticipated so when discussing the plans with your team, be sure to allow more time than expected to avoid unnecessary stress when things are moving more slowly than first thought.



While you’ve put in the effort to build your budget from scratch, sometimes it’s nice to know if you’re on the right track. We’ve created this quick guide as an estimate to help you determine if your renovation budget is on point or a bit off the mark;
(For these estimates we’re using the example of a home valued at $450,000 – The median house price in Adelaide)

  • Kitchen – The Kitchen is the hardest working room of your home so the budget spent here should be in proportion of the materials needed to ensure it stands the test of time. We recommend you allocate a budget of around 4% of your home’s current value. This means your kitchen renovation should be around $18,000 fully furnished inclusive of all materials, fixtures and fittings.
  • Bathroom/s – Bathrooms are the second most important, most used room in your home and although they’re smaller in size compared to the kitchen, they can make a big impact to its liveability and value. We recommend you allocate a budget that’s about 3% of your home’s current value – or $13,500 all said and done.
  • Living Room/s – If a kitchen is the heart of the home then the living rooms are its essence and soul. Many memories, milestones and moments happen here so it is important to give them the time and money they deserve. Living room renovations can be more than just new floors, paint and lighting, especially if you plan to open up a space by knocking out walls (which should be done by a licensed builder if it is a load-bearing wall!). Installing double-glazed windows to reduce noise, heat and cold, or upgrading heating and cooling options can eat up the budget here. We recommend up to 2% of your home’s current value (no more than $9,000) to create living rooms your family will love.
  • Facade – The street appeal can say a lot for the potential in increasing the value of your home, likewise the feel-good factor when arriving home after a hard day at work. To ensure you don’t overcapitalise on this area we recommend not spending more than 1.5% ($6,750) of your home’s current value.
  • Laundry – A well-functioning laundry is essential given the amount of time we use it each week, particularly if you have a large family. Whether it’s a room on its own or cleverly hiding in a cupboard, we recommend spending no more than 2%, or $9,000, of the current value of your home.
  • Bedrooms – When renovating your bedrooms, you should be aiming to create a calm and soothing space. Major costs may be replacing window glass with double-glazing, flooring, installing robes, upgrades to lighting or the heating and cooling of the room. We recommend a budget of no more than 1% of the current total value of your home – that’s $4,500.
  • Outdoor Living – Beautiful backyards, exciting entertaining areas, and opulent outdoor living areas all play a part in creating a home you love to be in. A typical budget for these areas is around 2% ($9,000) of the total value of your home.

Of course, individual circumstances and preferences mean these estimates may not ring true for you as more luxurious renovations call for a bigger budget, just as renovations to maximise profit from the sale of your home requires a tighter budget.

If the process of renovating your home is daunting or overwhelming, our helpful, expert team can guide you through the process and take the stress out of your home renovation. Meet the team and see what we can do for you.

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